The Southern Poverty Law Center won a key victory yesterday in their consumer fraud suit against New Jersey-based JONAH, Jews Offering New Alternatives to Homosexuality. From the SPLC:
Superior Court Judge Peter F. Bariso Jr. excluded Joseph Nicolosi [PHOTO], Christopher Doyle, Dr. James Phelan and Dr. John Diggs as witnesses for the defense, holding that their opinions are based on the false premise that homosexuality is a disorder. Bariso wrote that “the theory that homosexuality is a disorder is not novel but – like the notion that the earth is flat and the sun revolves around it – instead is outdated and refuted.” In New Jersey, scientific expert opinions must be based on premises and methodology generally accepted within the relevant professional field. Trial in the lawsuit against the New Jersey-based Jews Offering New Alternatives for Healing (JONAH) is scheduled to begin in the early summer of 2015. The judge’s ruling shows that much of the JONAH experts’ planned testimony is irrelevant.
Nicolosi is the founder of NARTH. Equality Case Files provides some quotes from the judge’s ruling:
“The overwhelming weight of scientific authority concludes that homosexuality is not a disorder or abnormal. The universal acceptance of that scientific conclusion — save for outliers such as JONAH — requires that any expert opinions to the contrary must be barred.”
“[T]he theory that homosexuality is a disorder is not novel but — like the notion that the earth is flat and the sun revolves around it — instead is outdated and refuted. Homosexuality was listed as a mental disorder in the DSM until its removal in 1973. Although the DSM has added newly recognized disorders as a result of evolving understandings of the medical field, this case presents the opposite situation: the APA removed homosexuality from the DSM upon concluding that it was not a disorder. JONAH has not identified any case that provides a standard for the admission of obsolete and discredited scientific theories. By definition, such theories are unreliable and can offer no assistance to the jury, but rather present only confusion and prejudice.”
“The existence of a minority of conversion therapy proponents does not and cannot negate the fact that the DSM and its exclusion of homosexuality are generally accepted in the mental health field. Furthermore, a group of a few closely associated experts cannot incestuously validate one another as a means of establishing the reliability of their shared theories.”
BOOM. Maggie Gallagher is the chairperson of the legal group defending JONAH.